Rewa River Water Supply Scheme to Address Intermittent Supply

The Rewa River Water Supply Scheme will help to resolve the issue of intermittent water supply in certain parts of the greater Suva-Nausori area by expanding Water Authority of Fiji’s (WAF) supply capacity.

The project will add an additional 40 million litres per day into the Suva/Nausori water system, enabling WAF to cater for the extra demand, which has been the reason for intermittent supply.

With over 360,000 people now living in the Suva-Nausori corridor, over the last 3 decades, no new source of water was developed while the population kept growing. As a result, there is currently a 2-million litre gap between supply and demand per day.

Dr Amit Chanan, WAF CEO, says the project has been designed with a long-term view to improve service delivery in the region as a whole, not just the Suva-Nausori corridor.

“This project will relieve pressure on parts of our infrastructure that are being stressed by the current demands, and as a proactive measure, there are provisions in place by which this plant can be further expanded to 80 ML/d, to cater for even greater demand in the future.”

The Rewa River Water Supply Scheme will be commissioned by the end of 2023.

Meanwhile, with nearly 4 years and 4 months of unwavering dedication, on July 21st, 2023, a significant milestone was achieved with the Trial Water Transfer, as well as other key components of the project which are listed below:

  • The civil structures of the new Water Treatment Plant and the Waitolu Reservoir were completed.
  • The 7.8km rising main pipeline was successfully connected.
  • Except for the Sawani pipe bridge, the 17.8km gravity pipeline has also been fully connected.
  • Most of the mechanical and electrical equipment installation was finished.
  • The EFL network power supply was permanently energised.
  • Water could be extracted from the Rewa River and transferred to Waitolu Reservoir.

Celebrating this significant achievement was Powerchina Group’s (project contractor) Senior Management of Headquarters, which is under the leadership of

  • Mr. Liu Yuan, Vice President of Powerchina Group, together with
  • Mr. Ji Xiaoyong, Deputy Chief Economist of Powerchina Group,
  • Mr. Hu Zhanjun, Deputy General Manager of Sinohydro Bureau 10,
  • Mr. Cheng Kaiyu, Deputy General Manager of Huadong Engineering Co. Ltd (had visited Fiji on July 24th, 2023 and attended the Trial Water Transfer ceremony held at Viria village, as well as the new Water Treatment Plant on July 25th, 2023), together with
  • WAF Chief Executive Officer, Dr Amit Chanan,
  • WAF Chief Infrastructure Delivery Officer, Mr. Sourav Majumder, and the WAF executive team.

At the ceremony, WAF CEO, Dr Amit Chanan delivered an enthusiastic speech, expressing thanks on behalf of the Fiji Government, WAF, and the Fijian people for this significant livelihood project. He extended gratitude to the project’s funding partners, including the Asian Development Bank (ADB), European Investment Bank (EIB), Green Climate Fund (GCF), as well as the project contractor, Powerchina Group, and the employer’s representatives, SMEC & EGIS.

Subsequently, Powerchina Group’s Vice President, Mr. Liu Yuan and Chief Economist, Mr. Ji Xiaoyong also delivered speeches at this celebration.

In their speeches, congratulations were extended for reaching such a significant milestone in the project. Gratitude was expressed to the employer, WAF, for their trust and support towards the project contractor.

Additionally, heartfelt praise was bestowed upon Fiji as one of the most robust economic development countries among the South Pacific Island countries. It is also an example for the South Pacific Island countries to learn from in their national economic development and management.

Finally, they also expressed the willingness of Powerchina Group to engage in other water infrastructure and power projects with WAF and other Authorities in Fiji, to continue to deepen and expand the company’s cooperation with Fiji to achieve mutual benefits and common development.

Overview of the Project

The Rewa River Water Supply project is structured into three stages, with Stage 1 currently underway. The first stage targets a daily output capacity of 40 ML/d and involves the construction of a new Water Treatment Plant situated near Viria village. The treated water from this plant will then be pumped through a 7.8km rising main pipeline to a newly established Storage Reservoir at Waitolu village. Subsequently, the water will be transported through a 17.8km gravity water pipeline to connect with the existing distribution network at Lal Singh Endpoint.

As the project progresses to Stage 2, the daily output capacity is set to increase to 80 ML/d. Furthermore, in Stage 3, the project has the potential for further expansion, with the daily output capacity reaching 100 ML/d.

Benefits of the Completed Project

The completion of the Rewa River Water Supply project will significantly improve the domestic water situation for approximately 360,000 people in the great Suva area, including the villages near the Water Treatment Plant and along the project pipeline. The enhanced capacity and reliability of the urban water supply system ensured adequate water supply, even during peak demand periods.

Secondly, the location of the Intake of the new Water Treatment Plant is 49km away from the river mouth, which could provide additional security against salinity impacts that are likely due to climate change and rising sea levels.

Furthermore, due to the construction of this project, nearly a thousand jobs have been provided for Fiji, and the development of the surrounding areas of the project has also been accelerated